Friday Roundup

Dave · June 8, 2007 at 8:15 am · Filed Under Mariners 

So, obviously, the draft was the big news from yesterday. There’s three posts on it below this, so scroll down if you’re looking for information on Philippe Aumont. After the first round, the M’s selected five more players – college 3B Matt Mangini, HS outfielders Denny Almonte, Daniel Carroll, and Joe Dunigan, and college RHP Nolan Gallagher. Don’t read anything into the fact that they loaded up on toolsy young outfielders and any hidden meanings about their intentions regarding Ichiro – the decisions are completely disconnected from one another, and they were simply taking the players they thought were the best available at the time of the pick.

Speaking of the M’s center fielder, it’s Ichiro Day at the P-I, as they got nearly the entire baseball department to spend the offday writing an opinion piece on what the M’s should do with him. David Andriessen writes the “What is he worth” article, Ted Miller pens the “just sign him” piece, Seth Kolloen gives the emotional heartstrings a tug, Bill Virgin discusses Ichiro’s lack of endorsement deals, and Greg Johns talks to Adam Jones about biding his time in Tacoma.

We wrote about Ichiro a few weeks ago, and nothing has changed since. For various reasons, Ichiro is an underappreciated player in many circles of the fanbase, and he’s clearly the best player on the team, one of the true superstars in baseball, and a remarkably valuable player. Losing Ichiro would be a crippling blow to an organization that needs to be adding talent, not subtracting it. The “Trade Ichiro For Pitching” crowd wants the M’s to cut off their nose to spite their face, and I couldn’t be more against that line of thinking. So, yea – the M’s are currently contenders, Ichiro is their best player, he shouldn’t be traded, and they should try their darndest to resign him this winter.


181 Responses to “Friday Roundup”

  1. Chris Miller on June 8th, 2007 3:12 pm

    #146, that WOULD be my second biggest concern of all w/ trading Ichiro (first being the lost chance to re-sign him). If Bavasi/Fontaine is still around next year, I’d trust Fontaine w/ a couple draft picks over Bavasi with a trade, especially one that mandated starting pitching update. If he had such a mandate, and couldn’t get anyone to bite, then what, does he trade Ichiro for another HoRam?

  2. Mike Snow on June 8th, 2007 3:13 pm

    do they age so well that they are worth $20 million at age 39?

    In Ichiro’s age-39 season, the Miguel Batistas of the world will be getting $20 million a year.

  3. Chris Miller on June 8th, 2007 3:16 pm

    Boggs and Gwynn were not gold glove CF. Not the best comps, at least for HOF comparisons. They were both better hitters though. Also Gwynn was probably the best non-power hitters ever, which isn’t fair to Ichiro or Boggs.

  4. BLYKMYK44 on June 8th, 2007 3:18 pm

    Also, why do people automaticall assume that it is reasonable to expect that in the next five seasons he will keep up his pace of 200+ hits…other than Pete Rose I can’t find any player (limited search of recent players considered good “hitters”) who had 200 hits in his age 39 season.

    Is it common for 38 and 39 year olds to get 200 hits in a season?

    In Ichiro’s age-39 season, the Miguel Batistas of the world will be getting $20 million a year.

    – Hmmm, I’m not so sure…but I guess we will see how the market will inflate over that period.

  5. VanillaGorilla on June 8th, 2007 3:19 pm

    forgive my ignorance but when I look up the draft pick’s stats what does CBO stand for a pitcher? It usually goes games started, complete games, shot outs/CBO

  6. MarinerDan on June 8th, 2007 3:19 pm

    150 — Gwynn the best non-power hitter ever? Ty Cobb might disagree with you there.

  7. MarinerDan on June 8th, 2007 3:21 pm

    CBO = combined shutout

  8. MarinerDan on June 8th, 2007 3:23 pm

    Paul Molitor is the ONLY player ever with 200 hits in his age 39 season — he had 225.

  9. Manzanillos Cup on June 8th, 2007 3:25 pm

    The cool thing to do if you get that upset about someone’s misuse of the english language would be to send them an email and tell them about it privately. Calling someone out like that is bush league.

  10. Chris Miller on June 8th, 2007 3:25 pm

    Actually Ty Cobb would probably kick me in the balls, and when I’m done kick me in the head a couple times for that one. I should have said, best non-power hitter in a very long time. I’m not even sure that’s correct now that I’m thinking about it.

  11. Chris Miller on June 8th, 2007 3:27 pm

    So if he only gets 199 hits, does that make him a bad player? Just kidding. I don’t buy into the 200 hits threshold thing, it reminds me of other magic counting stat numbers (40 HR, 100 RBI, etc). If a .300 hitter had 600 AB, that would be 180 hits, I’d take that for a 39 yo CF. I doubt he’s elite at 39 though, but you never know.

  12. MarinerDan on June 8th, 2007 3:29 pm

    Ichiro just seems to me like the type of player who will age really well. Like Steve Finley, only better. He takes such great care of himself (and does all that funky stretching).

  13. Evan on June 8th, 2007 3:38 pm

    Dave, do you know why the Blue Jays passed on their 31st Rd pick and, consequently, were not allowed to take anyone else? Is that common?

    Many teams will drop out of the draft before the final round. By passing on a pick, you’re choosing to abandon the draft.

    This year, the Jays did it first, followed by the Padres (rd 36) and the the Dodgers and Mets (rd 40). Teams drop out when they’ve gotten all the value they want from the draft and are content to stock the rest of their affiliates with free agents.

    If I recall correctly, the Jays have one fewer minor league team than most, which might explain why they got out first.

  14. Mike Snow on June 8th, 2007 3:40 pm

    The cool thing to do if you get that upset about someone’s misuse of the english language would be to send them an email and tell them about it privately.

    Not sure who’s upset, but sure, you just use the handy “email this commenter” feature. Oh, wait – that’s right, this isn’t a mailing list, just like it isn’t a message board.

  15. Jeff Nye on June 8th, 2007 3:43 pm

    The cool thing to do, actually, would be to stop bickering in this thread and let it get back to the original topic.

    I didn’t know that about the dropping out of the draft thing, either, but I haven’t really followed the MLB draft at all before this year and I didn’t realize there were so many rounds to it.

  16. Evan on June 8th, 2007 3:46 pm

    There used to be even more rounds. They cut way back to only 50.

    And I screwed up the count in my previous post – the ever-shrinking number of teams threw me off. The Dodgers and Mets may have dropped out in round 39. The Tigers came next (rd 43?).

  17. CSG on June 8th, 2007 3:47 pm

    Yeah, I do think it’s a big assumption to assume Ichiro will be performing at the same level when he’s 39, but I also think he’s a historically unique talent, and his devotion to his craft and his physical conditioning make me much more confident in the way he’ll age than I would be with a normal player.

    And Chris, I haven’t heard much about his change-up, and the only video I’ve seen of him just showed sinker/slider. I think a change-up would be a great addition to his arsenal, as it would greatly increase his effectiveness against lefties. Every source I’ve seen makes it sound like he has the potential to dominate righties, due to his size, arm slot, etc., so anything he does to increase his effectiveness against lefties is a bonus.

    I wonder if they’ll assign him to Everett immediately. He seems like a good candidate for instructional leagues/rookie ball, due to his age and rawness.

  18. Jeff Nye on June 8th, 2007 3:54 pm

    I don’t think that Ichiro will necessarily be performing at the same level he is right now at 39, but I think it is pretty likely that he will be performing at such a level that he will be worth $20 million at that point, especially considering it’s pretty likely player salaries will continue to inflate even beyond their current levels, and a $20 million dollar player then will be a significantly different animal than a $20 million dollar player now.

    Not to mention that Ichiro is just so unique of a player (see the evidence of him breaking PECOTA, among other things) that we really can’t project what his career path is going to be. He may be BETTER at 39 than he is now; we don’t really know.

  19. Chris Miller on June 8th, 2007 3:57 pm

    I doubt he goes to Everett right away, but would love to see him pitch live. I don’t know anything about his change-up, just that he has a “feel” for it (which is what everyone keeps saying). I read somewhere that it shows some promise of being a usable pitch, if he can control it, I’m not saying people think it’s gonna be great.

  20. Evan on June 8th, 2007 3:59 pm

    Aumont would definitely need to go to the instructional league. Not only is he 18 and widely described as raw, but he hasn’t had a high school team, and his childhood probably kept him from baseball a lot. He probably has less actual baseball experience than anyone else in the draft (except maybe that Huskies QB).

  21. Chris Miller on June 8th, 2007 4:00 pm

    If salary’s continue at the rate they’ve been going a league average player will be going for somewhere between 15 and 18 mil per by the time he’s 39.

  22. Mike Snow on June 8th, 2007 4:04 pm

    If it weren’t for the Mariners’ promotion philosophy, I’d almost expect Aumont not to even show up in Everett until next year.

  23. Ralph Malph on June 8th, 2007 4:08 pm

    . . .Al Oliver (.303 career, which is Ichiro’s lowest single-season average), who played defensive positions that make him much less valuable than Ichiro

    Just to quibble a bit, but Oliver was a centerfielder during a significant part of his career. He was the CF on the 1971 Pirates championship team. It was only later in his career that he became a 1B and DH.

  24. Mike Snow on June 8th, 2007 4:15 pm

    Sorry, I thought of him as playing left, with Parker in right, but I guess that was mostly just the one season. But to quibble a bit in return, he didn’t just move to 1B later in his career; that’s the position they played him at when he first came up, too.

  25. Karen on June 8th, 2007 4:15 pm

    #164. Yeah, I feel it’s other teams’ loss if they (or their fans) can’t see that Ichiro is practically one-of-a-kind in his focus, conditioning, reflexes, baseball savvy, etc.

    And it’d be a shame if the Mariners didn’t back up their presumed pride in his past accomplishments in a Mariners’ uniform by being low-ball or lukewarm in their efforts to keep him in that uniform.

    One thing I don’t think you’ll ever hear from Ichiro if he DOES leave via free agency is the bad-mouthing of the Mariners the way ARod did after he was safely ensconced in Texas.

  26. Ralph Malph on June 8th, 2007 4:25 pm

    Yeah, when Oliver came up he couldn’t break into the OF with Stargell in LF, Matty Alou in CF, and Clemente in RF. That’s not too shabby of an outfield. I’m so used to thinking of Pops at 1B I’d forgotten he was an OF.

  27. CSG on June 8th, 2007 4:25 pm

    I don’t think we’ll see the Mariners low-ball Ichiro. From what Dave’s said, the M’s basically have a blank check to resign him. It’s one of the few intrusions of the current ownership. It’s also the reason I don’t think we’ll see Ichiro traded. I think the only reason Ichiro leaves is if he’s completely disgusted with the team’s performance.

  28. SDRE on June 8th, 2007 4:54 pm

    The blank check theory is right. The M’s will pay way above and beyond. To Ichiro, it’s about winning and I think it’s the Dodgers, Padres or Giants the M’s need to worry about. The Dodgers seem to have a load of good young prospects (Kemp, Loney, Billingsley, Abreu, Either, Andy LaRoche, Broxton)and might want a leg up going into FA from their rivals.

    I agree resign Ichiro is the best. PR nightmare if they trade him with Japanese players in the future. (Johijama next year?)

    But I’ll take Kemp and another two of those prospects instead of draft picks. That looks like a nice transition to rebuilding IMO. (Sorry for the rosterbation)

    I gut feeling is telling me he’s going to walk. A gut feeling is probably not grounds to torpedo a star player future but I wish Ichiro would make it clear what he wants now.

  29. Edgar For Pres on June 8th, 2007 5:00 pm

    Dave, are you going to wait to update the Future Forty until the new draft picks get some pro playing time?

  30. dnc on June 8th, 2007 5:11 pm

    176, based on history, I think Dave will do his regular monthly update in July, and begin slotting the new draftees in as he gets reliable scouting info on them, whether it’s professional or not. IOW, expect Phillippe and Mangini to be in the next Future 40, but the others will probably ont show up until they establish themselves professionally. Just my guess.

    I do not think he will retrofit our top picks into the June Future 40.

  31. msb on June 8th, 2007 5:30 pm

    #173–Big Bob Robertson over at first 🙂

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